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Yeonhwa, Ulchin, Taebaek, Bonsan, Dongjeom

South Korea

Main commodities: Zn Pb
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The Yeonhwa and Ulchin mines exploited a number of high temperature skarn zinc-lead deposits on the east coast of South Korea from 1962.   The mine is some 200 km south-east of Seoul.

Mineralisation is hosted by skarn developed from basal Cambro-Ordovician limestone overlying slate, quartzite and a Precambrian granitic basement which have been exposed to hydrothermal activity associated with a Late Cretaceous to early Tertiary felsic, calc-alkaline pluton.   The skarns are composed of pipes of pyroxene and garnet at depth passing upwards into veins of rhodocrosite-pyrite at Yeonhwa and to tabular stratabound lenses adjacent to quartz-monzonite contacts at Ulchin.

Taebaek is the largest of the deposits worked from the Yeonhwa I mine complex, and is around 3.5 km NNW of the latter.   The other two deposits in the same mine complex are Bonsan and Dongjeom.

The Taebaek deposit is skarn free and occurs as chimney shaped carbonate-sulphide veins which are richer in lead and silver than the other deposits of the mine complex.   This suggests Taebaek was formed more distal from a causative intrusive.   Mineralisation has been dated at late Cretaceous (75 Ma) and comprise four stages, namely:  1). hexagonal pyrite + arsenopyrite + native bismuth,  2). pyrite + sphalerite + arsenopyrite,  3). monoclinic pyrrhotite + sphalerite + galena + electrum + Ag minerals, and  4). barren calcite.

The Bonsan deposit in the south of the main Yeonhwa I mine complex consist mostly of massive pipe like and minor stratabound ores.   The major pipe like ores are preferentially confined to limestone layers directly below slate beds where the stratabound ores are developed.   Skarn zones are found at depth as thin envelopes surrounding the massive ores and comprise abundant calc-silicates (clinopyroxene, garnet, epidote and pyroxmangite) with minor sulphides.   As in the other deposits of the complex, vein mineralisation is generally confined to the upper parts.

Production from 1962-1981 totalled 13.5 Mt. Grades were as follows:

  Yeonhwa - 3.9% Zn, 0.2% Pb, 0.1% Cu,
  Ulchin - 5.9% Zn, 2.3% Pb, 0.3% Cu,

Annual production in 1978 amounted to around 1.5 Mt of ore. Taebaek Deposit reserve, 1985 - 10 Mt @ 9% Zn+Pb, 100 g/t Ag

For detail see the reference(s) listed below.

The most recent source geological information used to prepare this summary was dated: 1993.    
This description is a summary from published sources, the chief of which are listed below.
© Copyright Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd.   Unauthorised copying, reproduction, storage or dissemination prohibited.


  References & Additional Information
   Selected References:
So C S, Yun S T, Koh Y K  1993 - Mineralogic, fluid inclusion, and stable isotope evidence for the genesis of Carbonate-hosted Pb-Zn(-Ag) orebodies of the Taebaek deposit, Republic of Korea: in    Econ. Geol.   v88 pp 855-872
Yun S  1982 - Zinc-lead skarns of the Yeonhwa-Ulchin district, South Korea: in    Econ. Geol.   v77 pp 1013-1032


Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd (PorterGeo) provides access to this database at no charge.   It is largely based on scientific papers and reports in the public domain, and was current when the sources consulted were published.   While PorterGeo endeavour to ensure the information was accurate at the time of compilation and subsequent updating, PorterGeo takes no responsibility what-so-ever for inaccurate or out of date data, information or interpretations.

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